Mobile app system HowYa has launched an at table customer review system to let restaurants, hotels, pubs and bars garner an honest review from patrons while dining with its customer feedback system.

A tablet will be offered to guests with their bill that captures customers views whilst still in the venue

Customers answer five questions about their experience, then add demographic information and can add comments to be posted to the restaurant’s social media account.

The system is available in two formats, ‘Premium’ for multi operators and ‘FREEmium’, a free of charge app, for single outlet operators.

The idea is that the system will offer reviews “not tainted by inherent British politeness” that may prevent diners giving their true thoughts.

The data is fed back in real time to the restaurant portal alerting the manager by email and text alert should a customer post a score that is below the standard bench mark set by that business, enabling the team at the restaurant to respond before the customer leaves. In trials across 30 restaurants, 92% of customers offered the opportunity to give feedback via HowYa did so, a significant difference from the success rate of post event online surveys.

Research shows that if a customer experience has been poor but the server attempted to solve their concerns, that customer is less likely to post a negative comment on a review site. HowYa’s system provides the restaurateur with a chance to manage any concerns before they leave the restaurant as well as capture the positives to spot trends and shape their business.

“Customer sentiment is fundamental to the success of any brand or hospitality business and we know that accuracy of online review sites are of particular concern for them with bad customer service reaching twice as many ears as good customer service. Whilst it is positive news that the Competition & Markets Authority Review into online review sites is currently underway, understanding customer sentiment and managing it before it reaches any online site is crucial”, said Mel Joseph, head of sales and marketing at HowYa.